Thursday, December 18, 2014

A Renewed Nightstand

When I first saw this piece, I didn't look twice.

It just didn't seem like a piece I could work with.  But after giving it some thought and noticing the detail, it seemed like it had some possibilities.

Although I don't have pictures of the process, here are the steps I took to makeover this nightstand using Shabby Paints.

-Did a quick scuff sand to dull some of the shine
-Cleaned the entire piece, in and out, with a 50/50 mix of water and vinegar
-Painted 3 coats of Shabby Paints Worn White on the body and drawers
-Painted 2 coats of Vanilla Bear on the drawer front and 2 coats Garfield Gray around the drawer front edges
-Painted the hardware first in Worn White then Garfield Gray
-Sanded over the Garfield Gray to make some of the Worn White visible
-Wet sanded the entire piece to smooth out the paint more and add some distressing
-Applied a coat of Shabby Paints Sheer VAX with a soft Cling On brush to seal and protect the paint
-Applied a light coat of Hazelnut ReVAX with a brush to age the piece and give some texture

It seems like a lot of steps but it went pretty quickly.  Much of that is due to the fact that Shabby Paints products dry very quickly and you can do multiple coats within a short amount of time.

Here is the final result.

I really like how you can take a plain brown piece, give it a little paint and make the details pop! Now you actually notice that this nightstand has some interesting lines and embellishments.

For more information on Shabby Paints, see

Friday, December 12, 2014

Using Shimmer

It's been a few weeks since I've written a blog post. That's how life goes sometimes. But recently I got a drum table from a friend that I'd like to share with you.  There was leather on the top, and guess what, you can paint leather with Shabby Paints.

If the leather had been in good shape, I would have left it alone.  But there were many scratches and stains. Painting seemed like a good way to bring this table back to life.

There were many different directions I wanted to go with this.  There was my usual gray and white option, which is my go-to.  Black would have been lovely for this and is a beautiful classic look.  But I wanted to try something different, something I hadn't done before.

I haven't yet painted with Shabby Paints Cali Taupe.  I don't know why, as it's a lovely color.  The first step was to prep the table by cleaning it really well.  The other important step was that I stirred the paint thoroughly, making sure any it was smooth and even with no separation of pigments and binders.  I then applied two coats of Cali Taupe which gave great coverage.  Then I used Shabby Paints Vibrant Gold, which is a wonderful gold glaze.  I applied it in strategic places, bringing out some of the table's details.  I also used it on the hardware and feet.  Here is what it looked like at this point.

I was really liking the look, but wanted to age it a bit too.  So I used Shabby Paints Varnish to seal and protect the paint, then Hazelnut ReVAX to age it and give some texture.  I didn't want to use too much of the Hazelnut ReVAX over the gold, as I knew it would make it look more dull. So just a little was applied over the gold areas.  As a final step, I reapplied one more coat of the Vibrant Gold to bring out that detail a little more.

Here is the final result.

The lighting really alters the look and gives it different tones, but it turned out to be a lovely neutral table with slight hints of gold popping through.  The top is really fun and has a soft textured look that the Hazelnut ReVAX created.  This isn't my usual style and I would describe it more as Old World, but I think it turned out beautifully.  I'm excited to keep using Shabby Paints Shimmers to make some details pop.

So another piece has been renewed.  Until next time...

To learn more about Shabby Paints, see

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Plain Old Chandelier turned Old World Chandelier

A friend gave me a great chandelier with great bones.  But its electrical wires were cut, and it was that bright shiny gold that we all know so well.

Since it was begging for a change, I pulled all the electrical out, then cleaned it up really well to get it ready for a paint job.

The first coat was Shabby Paints Vanilla Bear.  It covered pretty well, but I touched up a few spots until it was completely covered.

I wanted a look of plaster, so using Shabby Paints Texture was a great way to achieve that.  The Texture reminds me of hummus--it has a similar consistency and color.  I wanted the top plaster-like coat to be white, so I mixed the Texture with Alamo White paint.  I didn't pay close attention to the ratio, but I'd say it was about 1:1.

After it was well mixed, I dabbed it over the Vanilla Bear with a chip brush.  I didn't cover completely as I wanted to see that first layer popping through.

This layer of Alamo White and Texture dried pretty quickly, and one coat was all that was necessary.  I could have done a second coat to build it up more, which in retrospect I might have done.  But it looked great with one coat too.  I loved the raw, matte look that it had, but I decided to seal it with VAX so that it would be more cleanable. So again with a chip brush so that I could get in all the nooks and crannies, I applied the VAX.

I let everything dry and added some candles.  Here is the final result-

I love the old world look that was created with Texture.  Another Shabby Paints transformation is complete!

For more information on Shabby Paints, see

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Gustavian Style Furniture

Lately I've been a little obsessed with scouring Gustavian style or Swedish style furniture on Pinterest and Google Images.  The furniture tends to be simple, yet full of subtle textures.  It's lovely, and, hard to replicate.  But I made an attempt with this writing desk I had found.  It started like this...

Unfortunately, all my progress pictures did not turn out properly.  But I can quickly explain the process.

First I painted the piece in Shabby Paints Alamo White, because I wanted to distress certain areas to have the white peaking through.  I also applied Vaseline to the base and the rim on the top so that the paint would look chipped in certain areas. One coat of Baby Boo was painted over the Alamo White.  Then I rubbed away the areas where the Vaseline was to see the layers peaking through. Finally, to get more soft texture and that faded Scandinavian look, I did a light wash of Lillian Gray over the Baby Boo.  To do this, I watered down the Lillian Gray and applied it, then wiped some of it away.

After the paint was dry to touch, I applied Sheer VAX for protection, then lightly applied Hazelnut ReVAX for further texture and dimension.

Here is the final result.

So again we went from this

to this.

I'm pretty happy with the result, and will continue to attempt the trick of creating the Gustavian style.

For more information on Shabby Paints, see

Friday, September 5, 2014

Mirror Mirror on the Wall

I didn't think I was going to write about this mirror, so I didn't take pictures as it was being recreated.  But I do have some nice ones of the finished product.  When I found it, it looked like this.

It was pretty plain when I found it.  The wood was okay, but not amazing.  So it got a new look with some Shabby Paints products.  Here are some step by step instructions on what I did, allowing for proper drying time in between coats:

-lightly scratched the surface with 220 grit sandpaper
-cleaned it well with 1:1 ratio of water and vinegar
-painted a coat of Vanilla Bear paint
-created an applique by taping a stencil to the top part of the mirror and applying Texture on it (waited for it to dry and pulled off the stencil--let the Texture finish drying overnight)
-applied a coat of Pearl Gold Shimmer Glaze
-spread some Fracture over the entire piece
-painted Worn White over the Fracture (it's fun to watch the paint start to crackle)
-highlighted the applique in Snow White paint
-applied VAX to seal and protect
-applied a small amount of Hazelnut ReVAX for some slight aging

Whew!  It seems like a lot but it went quickly and was very easy to do.  Here is the result:

I hung it on my wall to snap some photos, and now that it's there, it just might be staying.

For more information on Shabby Paints, see

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Clean and Simple Dresser

It's funny when you find an interesting piece of furniture, then later come across the same or very similar piece.  About two years ago I found this-

and turned it into this-

The response was very positive and there was a lot of interest around it.  So when that happens, sometimes you just have to repeat it.

Several weeks ago I found this, and knew exactly what I would do with it. White with black hardware just seems so appropriate for the style.

I wasn't good about taking pictures throughout its progress, but here is what I did.  I took about one minute to scratch up the surface with 220 grit sandpaper.  Then I cleaned the piece very thoroughly with a 1:1 ratio of vinegar and water.  It was now time to start painting.  I applied 3 coats of Shabby Paints Snow White.  It's the brightest white color they have.  When going from a darker color to a very light one, it can take a few coats to cover.  There were still some spots that weren't quite bright white due to the darker wood underneath, but applying White ReVax would conquer two things--seal and protect the paint as well as whitening and brightening it more.

Just after one coat of White ReVax, the dresser was stark white.  I debated doing a little distressing but really liked it as is.

Then I painted all the hardware in Licorice.  In retrospect I would have tried to spray the Licorice instead of brushing.  It took a few coats to cover it completely.  Finally I sealed the hardware with Black ReVax.  It's a great little tip--using White ReVax over Snow White and Black ReVax over Licorice.

So here is the final result.

There are these little interesting holes in the wood that show through, creating little speckles.  But it looks nice and provides added interest.

So once again we went from this-

to this-

And another makeover is complete!

To learn more about Shabby Paints, see